The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

Just days after rejecting a petition for a proposed amendment to the state constitution to legalize marijuana, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine rejected a similar petition from another group.

Last Monday, DeWine rejected the petition from the group, Responsible Ohio, entitled “Medical Marijuana and Personal Use Amendment” that would have added a section to the constitution to allow adults age 21 and older to grow marijuana at home.

He found two defects in the summary language of the group’s petition:

• The summary language omits that the proposed amendment permits the sharing of specified amounts of marijuana between adults 21 years old and older.

• The summary language does not accurately reflect the manner in which proposed taxes would be distributed.

“After reviewing the submission, I conclude that I am unable to certify the summary as a fair and truthful statement of the proposed amendment,” DeWine said in a letter to the petitioners.

Oregon council on Monday approved the purchase of four new vehicles for $89,252 from Lebanon Ford, of Lebanon, Ohio for the police division.

The cost of the new 2016 Ford Utility police interceptor vehicles, originally priced at $110,152, was reduced because of a trade-in credit of $20,900.

Lebanon Ford provided the lowest quote for the new vehicles, and a higher trade-in credit, than Mathews Ford, Oregon. Mathews submitted a quote of $119,324, with a trade in-credit of $17,000, for a total cost of $102,324.

Police Chief Mike Navarre said the transition from the sedan to the SUV Ford “provides a lot of advantages for our officers.”

He said the Ford Utility police interceptor is widely used.

“It’s the most popular police vehicle used right now in the U.S.,” he said.

Navarre said Mathews Ford was aware of the state contract through the Cooperative Purchasing program, but bid much higher.

The company planning to construct a 22-mile natural gas pipeline between the cities of Maumee and Oregon has filed its opposition with the Ohio Power Siting Board to a request by a coalition of about 20 residents for another hearing on the project.

The residents, calling themselves the Oregon Lateral Citizens Coalition, filed their request with the siting board last month to push for an alternate route for the 24-inch-diameter pipeline that will supply natural gas for an $800 million electric generation plant along Lallendorf Road in Oregon.

While not opposing the generation plant, the residents want the siting board to hold a full hearing on the pipeline project as proposed by North Coast Gas Transmission, a Columbus- based company.

From Maumee, the pipeline would run under the Maumee River and through the City of Perrysburg and Perrysburg Township. From there, it would proceed northeast through Lake Township, the Village of Walbridge and City of Northwood, ending in Oregon.

The Drinking Water Protection Act, which would protect drinking water from harmful cyanotoxins passed in the House of Representatives by a vote of 375-37 on Tuesday.

Toledo last August issued a three-day tap water ban after microcystin, a cyanotoxin, was found in samples taken from the Collins Water Treatment Plant, which draws water from the western basin of Lake Erie.

The bipartisan legislation, sponsored by Congressman Bob Latta (R-OH), would push federal agencies to provide clear protocols and oversight in the event of a large-scale algal bloom and would require the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to provide a strategic plan to Congress for assessing and managing the risks associated with algal toxins in drinking water provided by public water systems.

During the water crisis, “concerns and questions were, and have since been, raised about health effects data, testing protocols, treatment processes, and appropriate short and long term responses,” Latta said in a speech on the floor of the House Tuesday.

“During hearings before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, witnesses testified on the further complexity of this issue due to the numerous algal toxins…that may have potential negative health effects when present in public drinking water,” he said.

A statewide initiative to encourage the commercial and industrial sectors to provide more data about their recycling efforts is being promoted by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency in a partnership with the Ohio Chamber of Commerce, Ohio Council of Retail Merchants and Ohio Manufacturers’ Association.

Dina Pierce, an OEPA spokesperson, said the agency recently established a collaborative website that includes contact information for each solid waste management district in the state and access to a survey the districts conduct annually to determine the amounts and types of materials being recycled by businesses.

That data is reported to the EPA, which crunches the numbers to get a picture of how much material is being diverted from landfills and if the state’s 52 waste management districts are meeting Ohio’s recycling goals.

“The partnership is new,” Pierce said. “We’re working with the chamber and other associations to try to encourage participation in the survey. One thing we’ve identified in recent years is a need for more glass recycling. Our manufacturers in Ohio need the glass. Owens Illinois is one example. They make bottles so they need recycled glass and they’ve been shipping it in from out of state.

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